5 Essential Ministry of Sound Singles | Features | MN2S

This week, Sony Music acquired Ministry of Sound Recordings, giving them the rights to the entire back catalogue of one of the UK’s most successful independent labels. In light of this, we look back at five essential singles from the Ministry of Sound.

Before this acquisition, Ministry of Sound was one of the most successful and popular independent record labels in UK history. Well known for their events and compilation departments, Ministry of Sound’s A&R wing also introduced us to some great artists and released some great tracks under the banners of Ministry of Sound Recordings, Sound of Ministry, Open, Data, Substance, Smoove and Rulin’ and MistaJam’s Speakerbox imprint.

Since they started releasing music there have been hundreds of great tracks on the label. These are just five of the songs that the Ministry’s independent era should be remembered for.

5. Secondcity – ‘I Wanna Feel’ [2014]

Reading this song’s title brings the melody instantly to mind. British-American producer Secondcity’s summery backdrop ensured the track would get regular play on the airwaves and at clubs and festivals, but it was Kelli-Leigh’s interpolation of Toni Braxton’s 1996 track ‘You’re Makin’ Me High’ that really took the song to the next level.

‘I Wanna Feel’ reached number one on the UK Dance, Indie and Singles charts in May 2014, and it reached number two on the USA’s Dance Club Songs chart in July. Since the song’s release the video has racked up an astonishing view count, approaching the 30 million mark as of August 2016.

4. Eric Prydz – ‘Call on Me’ [2004]

One of Ministry of Sound’s biggest-selling songs, ‘Call on Me’ was originally created from a sample of the Steve Winwood 1980s song ‘Valerie’. When Prydz played Winwood the track, the singer was so impressed he re-recorded his vocal line, presumably to make it sound less like “Valerie” and more like “call on me.”

The song is well known for its infamous music video which stars several dancers carrying out a suggestive aerobics routine. An uncut version of the video got its own DVD release, and the Ministry even enlisted the dancers to record a feature length video entitled Pump It Up – The Ultimate Dance Workout which saw them working out to various dance hits of the time. Needless to say, ‘Call on Me’ became a workout classic.

3. Steve Angello & Laidback Luke feat. Robin S. – ‘Show Me Love’ [2009]

Remaking one of the greatest and most highly-regarded dance songs of all time is risky. Luckily, Steve Angello and Laidback Luke had original singer Robin S. on board to deliver her iconic vocals.

The new ‘Show Me Love’ became almost as big a hit as the original, topping the UK Dance Chart and nearly reaching the top ten in the UK Singles Chart. It also inspired dozens of remixes from the likes of Hardwell, Afrojack, Solodisco and Partysquad.

2. TIEKS feat. Dan Harkna – ‘Sunshine’ [2016]

A major contender for this year’s song of the summer, TIEKS’ breezy Balearic production and Dan Harkna’s warm vocals have taken this song to the top of the Shazam chart after TV viewers heard the song on a car advert and had to know what it was.

The track still lights up commercial breaks regularly, but it has also become a regular staple of the airwaves, being picked as Track of the Day by BBC Radio 1 and landing on Apple Music’s Dance A-List. The song has also been certified viral, hitting Spotify’s Viral Chart.

1. Format:B – ‘Chunky’ [2015]

‘Chunky’ may be one of the greatest dance singles of all time (but that’s for another list). Released at the end of 2015, the track climbed the UK Dance chart and was one of the year’s most critically adored singles.

Dance authority Mixmag named the single from the German duo as the third best track of the year, and countless clubgoers would likely place it even higher.

Though Ministry of Sound Recordings’ independent era has come to an end, we can hope that they continue to support good music, to keep some house music in the mainstream, and to provide soundtracks for aerobics workouts for years to come in partnership with Sony Music.

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